Taking environmental action at school

  • walkout
    ARHS and ARMS students walked out of school to attend a climate rally in town on March 15. Leif Maynard speaks to his peers. Photo: Kevin Gutting
  • walkout2
    ARHS student Naomi Johnson attended the rally. Photo: Kevin Gutting

Taking action toward conservation and increasing environmental awareness is what the Environmental Action Club is all about.

And this club practices the three Rs: reduce, reuse, and recycle.

Not only that, but according to The Daily Hampshire Gazette, “roughly 200 high school and middle school students skipped classes” as part in an international walkout on March 15 to raise awareness about climate change, many of them members of this passionate club.

Club leaders include Mandisa Bailey, Rachael Nguyen, Joy Yamagiwa, Allison Brau, Emily Wang, Zada Forde, Miya Hong, and Grace Garman.

In addition to participating in protests for climate action, members work on various projects inside and outside of the high school, the middle school, and local elementary schools.

They spark interest in and knowledge about environmental problems because they are very important and “someone’s got to do it,” said sophomore Grace Garman.

The club’s most recent accomplishment has been advocating for the installment of hand driers as an alternative to paper towels.

Data reveals that hand dryers “actually involve less energy consumption than paper towels,” said Hong.

For the club, projects like these, or their proposed solar plan, can take a while to institute.

The club is now aiming for a proper composting system at lunch with separate labeled bins.

And they’d like to rehabilitate the greenhouse that is currently out of commission, to use it “for growing fresh vegetables for the school,” said Hong.

Last year they had various successes like the installation of the water bottle fillers next to the restrooms.

The club has also participated in many “green” movements and has held clothing drives where people can donate clothes to those who need them, encouraging reuse rather than buying new.